Tulsa Celebrates 125th Birthday, Historical Society To Open New Exhibit

Wednesday, January 18th 2023, 5:29 pm


The City of Tulsa is celebrating its 125th Birthday Wednesday.

To honor the history of Tulsa, the Tulsa Historical Society and Museum will open an exhibit Thursday. Sophia Hurd is the curator of the “Constructing Tulsa” exhibit.

"I grew up in Tulsa, my mom and my grandfather grew up in Tulsa, so I have deep roots in this city,” said Hurd. “And just driving around and seeing where my mom grew up, and then where my grandfather grew up, and just hearing their stories about how this city has changed over the years."

The exhibit will show pictures, maps, and even an old post office box from the 125 years of Tulsa’s history. One of Hurd’s favorite parts is seeing all the people who contributed something to building the city.

"Something that I wasn't expecting but I fell in love with searching through these photos is the construction workers,” said Hurd. “There are so many photos where these construction workers just doing their jobs, they had no idea their photo would end up in a museum."

Michelle Place, the Executive Director of the Tulsa Historical Society, says when Tulsa was incorporated back on January 18, 1898, it was a much different place.

"Tulsa was dirt streets, clapboard buildings, very little of it was masonry in fact, we only had one masonry building at the time," said Place.

Place believes if they could, the leaders of Tulsa would look at the city and be proud.

"I am sure that the people who were here in 1898 could not imagine Tulsa today,” said Place. “But what they could imagine is a thriving community, a commitment to arts and culture was underway."

Hurd says that even though she’s seen the city change plenty in her time, the values of Tulsans have always been the same.

"It's just really interesting to see things growing and changing, but there's a kernel that always stays the same,” said Hurd.


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